Prospects for peace treaty signing between Azerbaijan, Armenia
    Experts weigh in

    INTERVIEWS  11 May 2024 - 15:05

    Samir Ibrahimov

    Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan agrees with the idea of signing a peace treaty with Azerbaijan by November. He stated this at a recent press conference. Earlier, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev talked about the possibility of signing a peace treaty by the end of this year. According to Pashinyan, in order to achieve this goal, it is necessary to fix in the document all the principles agreed upon during the negotiations. In addition, the Armenian Prime Minister said: "We have started the demarcation process from the Tavush region to create security guarantees. When the process of demarcation of the border goes in a normal way, is completed, it will become a security guarantee in itself. We have gone to all this to delegitimize the war, to deprive the war of any grounds".

    To what extent the current realities are in line with expectations about the possibility of signing a peace agreement before November? Under what conditions can this happen? Are there any forces or circumstances that could create problems on this path?

    Foreign experts responded to questions from Caliber.Az.

    Stanislav Tkachenko, Doctor of Economic Sciences, Professor at St. Petersburg State University and Russian political scientist, believes that currently the prospect of signing a peace agreement between Azerbaijan and Armenia looks more realistic than ever before.

    "The negotiating space where Armenia could discuss the terms of this peace has shrunk after September 2023 to such an extent that the question of long discussions on the terms of peace has de facto been removed from the agenda. The Karabakh issue has become an internal affair of Azerbaijan; the border line between the two states is generally clear, as Yerevan recognizes the neighboring state's territory of 86,600 square kilometers.

    The current realities for Armenia: the sharp cooling of relations with Russia, the lack of large-scale assistance from France and the United States, the growing diplomatic pressure in favor of an agreement from Türkiye," the professor noted.

    The political cost for the Armenian Prime Minister to recognize the objectivity and, in fact, the hopelessness of this situation is extremely high, he says.

    "It is very likely that when the negotiation process reaches its final stage, Yerevan will face an acute political crisis, and Pashinyan himself will face the threat of resignation. But these circumstances will not be a serious obstacle to the signing of a peace agreement; Armenian society has already gotten used to the idea of defeat in the conflict and the need to turn this page of its history as soon as possible. Therefore, my forecast is that by the end of the year an agreement on peace and delimitation of the state border between Azerbaijan and Armenia will be signed," Tkachenko said.

    As Georgian diplomat and analyst Mamuka Gamkrelidze noted in turn, Pashinyan's statements that the delimitation of the border with Azerbaijan is 90 per cent complete in the Tavush region (Tovuzgala) and the signing of a peace treaty is expected before November were met very positively both among politicians and the general public.

    "This treaty will be a crucial step for the security of the entire South Caucasus. Today's world is focused on logistics and the free movement of goods and people. In this regard, a long-term peace in such an important logistical hub will certainly be welcomed very positively," Gamkrelidze noted.

    According to him, the only force that needs tension in the region is Russia, which is gradually losing its former influence in the South Caucasus.

    "It is very likely that the internal forces in Armenia, which are dissatisfied with the fact of delimitation, are connected with the Russian Federation. I think the leaders of Azerbaijan and Armenia will have enough wisdom and patience to bring the process to the signing of a peace treaty," Gamkrelidze concluded.

    Caliber.Az

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